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Travel to Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais
>> HISTORICAL TOWN IN BRAZIL <<

Vacation / travel service in Ouro Preto:
* Transfers (Belo Horizonte Airport/Ouro Preto/Airport)

* Stay at chosen hotel in Ouro Preto; see options below:
OBS: Number of nights, according to your inquiry...!
* Alternative tours/activities - see links to the left:

ADVICE: Visit also TIRADENTES, near to Ouro Preto...!

PRICE: Consult / Send us your budget inquiry

NOTE: Send us your inquiry (itinerary with dates of your entire journey to Brazil), then we will send you a proposal free of charge, according to the frames you give to us.
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Downtown
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All information in this page is subject to alteration without previous notice. Remember that availability and prices will only be guaranteed in the confirmation of a requested booking.
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MORE ABOUT VACATION IN OURO PRETO

FACTS ABOUT OURO PRETO: It is the former Capital of the State of Minas Gerais, and attracts tourists from all over Brazil and the world who wants to know Brazilian history and sacramental art of Aleijadinho’s and Ataíde’s, as well as the local modern arts and crafts and the typical food from Minas Gerais. It is approximately 100km from the airport in the city of Belo Horizonte, and about 620km from Sao Paulo City, and 400km from Rio de Janeiro. The town belongs to the State of Minas Gerais and has about 67.000 inhabitants.

HOW IS OURO PRETO: It is a picturesque town and to walk through the steep and narrow streets of Ouro Preto – that still keep the original stone pavement – is like taking a stroll in time. The city was granted the title of Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. This has permitted the preservation of one of the richest architectonic complexes in the country until today. Ouro Preto was an important economic and political center in the 18th Century, when enormous quantities of gold were found in the mountains of Minas Gerais, which brought great development to the region. The city was also the stage for one of the most important episodes in the History of Brazil: the Minas Gerais Conspiracy, in 1789, when Joaquim José da Silva Xavier (known as Tiradentes) fought for the independence of Brazil, which still was a Portuguese colony. Today, the large houses, churches and palaces built during the so called Gold Cycle are museums visited by thousands of people, displaying the former owner’s objects. The houses that belonged to the conspiracy members, and the baroque churches decorated with gold in the most classical rococo style, now house art and history. And if culture and history become tiresome, and you would like a more direct contact with nature, Ouro Preto offers the Itacolomi State Park, with hiking trails and many waterfalls.

WHEN TO GO / CLIMATE: It is possible to visit the region during the whole year. The temperature varies between 6 and 28°C, and in June and July – winter time – it can reach 2° C at night.

HOW TO GO: The closest airport is Confins CNF) airport located in Belo Horizonte, or the second airport of Pampulha (PLU) also in Belo Horizonte. Then by car or bus to the town of Ouro Preto or you may travel via another charming town in this region, named Tiradentes. It is also possible to visit by land, from São Paulo and/or Rio de Janeiro, but at the road conditions are bad and long distanced, we you to recommend the visits via Belo Horizonte.

HOW LONG STAY: For the first time visitor we recommend two nights stay, to able the visitors to enjoy the place, its main attractions. Further we use to recommend a visit to the neighboring town of Tiradentes as well. Besides the pre-booked hotel and airport transfers, we recommend you to book the tour “guide walk in the historical center”.

WHAT TO DO IN OURO PRETO: Besides the main attractions in Ouro Preto that you can read more about below there are some special events of interest as well, that may justify a longer stay:

EVENTS:
Winter Festival (July)
The Winter Festival is held in July, with musical shows, theatrical shows, several kinds of exhibitions and art workshops.

Holy Week (April)
During this time, streets are adorned with carpets made of colored saw dust and flowers, representing the Way of the Cross lived by Jesus – a Catholic Church tradition. It usually takes place in the month of April, but because the date changes, the correct days are defined annually.

Carnival (February / March)
Groups formed by student communities parade through the city. It takes place every February and attracts crowds interested in watching the merrymaking of Ouro Preto’s citizens.

ATTRACTIONS:

CHURCHES

Our Lady of Pilar Church
This church’s project, considered one of baroque’s most exquisite, is attributed to Pedro Gomes Chaves. The engraving on the main chapel was made by Francisco Xavier de Brito. The collection also includes an engraving covered with gold and more than 400 sculpted angels. Its ornamentation used 400 kilos of gold and 400 kilos of silver.

Our Lady of Carmo
The project was by Manoel Francisco Lisboa, Aleijadinho’s father, and it was constructed between 1766 and 1772. Vila Rica aristocracy attended it regularly.

Our Lady of the Rosary
It is a rare example of Mineiro baroque, with its circular façade. Its construction, which started in 1785, replaced the primitive chapel. The interior is very simple, contrasting with its external aspect, evoking black saints.

Saint Francis of Assisi
This is the most famous church in Ouro Preto, and it is one of the most magnificent examples of Mineiro baroque. Its construction started in 1766. It is also considered Aleijadinho’s masterpiece. He was responsible for the building’s general drawing, portals, main altar pulpit, lateral altars and main chapel.

Our Lady of Conception Church
Its construction lasted from 1727 to 1746. Manuel Francisco Lisboa, Aleijadinho’s father, was in charge of its project and execution. They are both buried in the church. The Aleijadinho Museum is annexed to it.

Saint Francis of Paula
This was the last church built during the colonial period. Its construction started in 1804. The image of its patron, which can be seen at the Aleijadinho Museum, is attributed to the master. There is a beautiful view of the city from its plaza.

Saint Iphigenia or Our Lady of the Rosary from Alto da Cruz Church
Its construction lasted 60 years – between 1730 and 1790. Manuel Francisco Lisboa participated in the project, as well as Francisco Xavier de Brito, author of the engraving on the main chapel. Tradition says it was built thanks to the gold from the Encardideira Mine, acquired by Chico Rei. On its façade there are the oldest stone clocks in the city.

Our Lady of Mercy and Compassion
This church was built between 1771 and 1793. The central tower was a project by Manuel Francisco de Araujo.

Saint Joseph
This belonged to the artist’s association. The main chapel and tower retable are Aleijadinho’s drawings. It was built between 1730 and 1811.

Saint John the Baptist Chapel
This is the oldest church in Ouro Preto, built by determination of Antonio Dias, Brazilian explorer, in 1698.


MUSEUMS

House of Tales
Dated from 1782 to 1787, it was constructed by João Rodrigues de Macedo, a tax collector from the Minas Province, who decided to live there as well as manage its business. It had many uses, including a prison for the conspiracy members. Today it houses the Center for Study of the Gold Cycle, the Mint and National Treasury Museum and the Ouro Preto Federal Revenue Agency and a Gallery.

School of Minas Science and Technical Museum
This was founded in 1877, as a Mining Museum by Claude Henri Gorceix, founder of the School of Minas. In 1995, it was expanded and became the School of Minas Science and Technical Museum. Nine sectors have already been implemented: Natural History – zoology and paleontology -, Mining, Mineralogy, Metallurgy, Iron and Steel Metallurgy, Design, Topography, Astronomy and Electro-Technical. There are more than 30 thousand pieces from all over the world.

Oratory Museum
Located in the old Novitiate house, the museum combines different styles of pieces that rescue the traditional religious customs of the Minas families.

Conspiracy Museum
The construction was initiated in 1784 by the City Hall, during Luis Cunha Menezes’ government. The work was interrupted several times, thus the building was finished only in 1846. It was used as the city government and a prison. In 1944, the Museum was inaugurated, and its collection gathers documents and objects that evoke the Inconfidência Mineira (Conspiracy) and several works of Minas Gerais Historic and Artistic Heritage. The conspiracy members’ mortal remains rest there. The Museum also has an annexed auditorium and the Manuel de Ataíde Room, for temporary exhibits.

SHOPPING
Local arts and crafts are rich in soap stone objects, like vases, ashtrays, jewelry boxes, plates and cups. These can be found in the city as well as in neighboring districts like Santa Rita and Mata dos Palmitos. Another of the region’s specialties includes the gold and precious stone jewelry, especially the rare imperial topaz. There are good antique and souvenir shops, as well as local artisan galleries spread throughout the city.